Latest News

Plymouth planning director Paul Barnard awarded RTPI’s top honour

13 December 2019

Paul Barnard, Plymouth City Council’s Service Director for Strategic Planning and Infrastructure, has been awarded the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) Gold Medal in recognition of exceptional achievement in the field of town and country planning.

The Gold Medal is open to all classes of membership internationally and has only been awarded 15 times in the RTPI’s history. Past recipients have included such luminaries as Sir Patrick Abercrombie, Sir Terry Farrell and Sir Peter Hall.

Paul Barnard was described by the RTPI as an ‘exceptional’ town planner, whose leadership, planning expertise, ability to innovate and sheer determination have resulted in planning services at Plymouth City Council now being considered amongst the best in the country.

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Above: RTPI Gold Medal winner Paul Barnard

Paul's team has won the RTPI’s prestigious Silver Jubilee Cup three times in recent years, including in 2019 for the City Change Fund, a pioneering community infrastructure initiative which embraces crowdfunding technology.

Paul Barnard said: “I have always been proud of planning and proud of what we as planners achieve. Planning is an inherently democratic process and I am therefore extremely honoured to be awarded the Gold Medal which, for me, acknowledges what local authority planners deliver day in and day out for the communities that we serve.

“Plymouth has been awarded the RTPI Silver Jubilee Cup three times in recognition of the creativity and innovation we have shown in delivering our proactive, positive planning philosophy. It has been a privilege and pleasure to lead such a dedicated group of planning and other professionals who work in the best traditions of public service.

“I became a student member in 1984 and I am grateful to the Institute for the leadership role it plays in supporting planners in their creative endeavours. It is truly humbling to be only the sixteenth recipient of the Gold Medal and to join such an illustrious list of visionary planners.”

Chair of RTPI’s Board of Trustees Sue Bridge said: “It is significant that the RTPI is awarding the highest honour it can give to a local authority planner who has delivered so much through positive planning.”

source: RTPI : 

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The ECTP-CEU is looking for a part-time Secretary (m/f) 

The ECTP-CEU is an international nonprofit association under Belgian law. Founded in 1985, ECTP-CEU (European Council of Spatial Planners - Conseil Européen des Urbanistes) brings together 28 professional spatial planning associations and institutes from 24 European countries as well as corresponding members. It is an umbrella association providing its members with a common framework to promote the visibility, recognition of the important societal role and practice of planning and urban development in Europe and its teaching, continuing professional development and the definition of professional responsibilities.
ECTP-CEU sets standards of conduct and education for the planning profession; engages in dialogue with local, national and European governments, identifies, and rewards examples of good planning all over Europe.

Job description

As Secretary you provide administrative support in order to make the European umbrella organisation work efficiently.
You assist the Secretary General and the Executive Committee; you are the organisation’s point of reference for all queries, requests or issues.
We are looking for a part-time (min 35 to max 50 %) flexible worker, who can work from home or elsewhere independently. The secretary is generally available during weekdays in order to answer emails and phone calls. There is no office available and there are no direct colleagues. A laptop computer and cell phone is provided. Limited two-day travels within Europe (generally 1 or 2 per annum).


Prepare and disseminate correspondence, memos and information
Prepare and help organising the executive committee meetings (4/year) and General Assembly meetings (2/year)
Answer phone calls and redirect them when necessary
Manage the agenda and arrange meetings and appointments
Maintain the organisation’s memory in a (digital) filing system
Manage the organisation’s emails
Assistance to the Secretary General. The Secretary & the Secretary General
work closely; a very good communication line between both is necessary. There is no strict need to be Brussels based, but as the majority of activities take place in and around Brussels, it is preferred to be based in the larger Brussels area
All logistics for the General Assemblies and the Executive Committee meetings occurring in Belgium are managed by the Secretary. When abroad, the Secretary provides support to the hosts who organise the meetings
Minutes are taken during the meetings and completed very soon after. Minutes are finalised with the SG before sharing with ExCo and later General Assembly
A simple accounting system has been developed in ExCel. All finances and expenses are managed under supervision of the treasurer
The internal HR and salary management is prepared under supervision of the Secretary General in collaboration with a professional social service
The website management, which is built and managed with Joomla. There is also a Facebook page and a Twitter account that are managed by the Secretary. Follow up and coordination of social media accounts. Managing the Newsletter system with a website plugin
Occasional publications are to be coordinated
Organisation of very few modest PR events


Proven work experience as secretary or administrative assistant (or equivalent)
Familiarity with office organisation and working in an international environment
High degree of independency, multi-tasking and time management capability
Commitment to the objectives of ECTP-CEU
Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English (main language) and French
Proficiency in MS Office

What do we offer?

We are a small umbrella organisation with a big network. We offer a market conform salary of a secretary, including Belgian social security and lunch vouchers.

How to apply?

Send your CV and motivation letter to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., no later than January 15, 2020, 10 PM.
After a first selection, a limited number of selected candidates will be invited for an interview.
All information: ECTP Secretary-general This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. mobile: +32473928656
Starting date: May 15th 2020

Call for a Co-Editor: Town Planning Review

The Town Planning Review (TPR), one of the world’s leading journals in the urban and regional planning field since 1910, invites applications for the position of Co-Editor. 

As a leading urban planning and regional planning journal, TPR provides a principal forum for communication between researchers and students, policy analysts and practitioners. It publishes a diversity of research approaches, welcoming full-length papers and review articles contributing to the advancement of town and regional planning research in highly developed economies and in emerging industrial states.

The current editorial team consists of three co-editors and is published by Liverpool University Press

The successful applicant will begin in January 2020.

Find out more about Town Planning Review here.

View the full job description and apply >




  • P4CA Climate Action STUDIO: From 14 to 17 October, the first P4CA Climate Action Studio took place in Zanzibar, a small island at threat of the heavy impacts of climate change. The intention is to apply the P4CA Studio approach in other contexts requiring urgent climate action. By articulating capacity-building and practice in particular locations, the P4CA Studios have the potential to help guiding planners address new pressing climate change issues. They can also demonstrate the power of urban planning practice in supporting effective climate action by national governments and local authorities. Read more here and find our recap video here. We welcome your ideas on potential other Studios in your countries. 


  • THINK PIECES: Do you have a breakthrough idea or an analysis to offer on climate action and urban and regional planning? In the last months, we have received 2 interesting new think pieces that will be shared on our website and social media, would you like to have yours also published? We invite you to submit your think-piece to make this part of P4CA grow! You can submit it and read them all here
    • Content: present an opinion or an idea, evidence-based and short, focusing on topics promoted by P4CA. The aim is to highlight an issue, expand on the underlying theme, and suggest an outcome.      
      Format800 to 1300 words in English language, including title and references. 
      Additional information: Short bio of the author in 50 words (maximum authorized – includes titles and organization name, email and web link)
  • RESEARCH: We are readying a group of academics from across the world to work on a piece of research entitled: Climate change and urban planning: state of the profession. The research will take a two-pronged approach on how well integrated climate action is into 1) urban planning curricula and 2) practice. If you are an academic working in this field and would like to contribute to your region’s research, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
  • COURSE MANUALS REPOSITORY: The repository is being updated of the UN-Habitat website. We will be able to release content next month. Thank you for your patience.
  • MEMBERSHIP: We now count 18 members organizations and more than 280 affiliates

(163 confirmed and 118 in the process)! How exciting!

    • WORLD URBAN FORUM 10, 8-13 February 2020, Abu Dhabi: P4CA will organize its annual members meeting during the Forum (date to be confirmed). Two requests for a side-event and a training event have been submitted by GPEAN and CAP to the WUF10 Secretariat. We will inform you if approved and share details about the events. Find more info about the Forum here.
    • PLEASE CHECK THE P4CA CALENDAR and SHARE WITH US your upcoming events in order to update the calendar.

The UN-Habitat P4CA Team

Planners for Climate Action

Climate Change Planning Unit
Urban Planning and Design Branch

P.O. Box 30030 00100

Nairobi, Kenya


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After the elections of the new National Council of ASSURB — one of our Italian member associations — on 26 October Markus Hedorfer has been elected new president.  The two vice presidents proposed by Hedorfer are Luca Rampado and Giuseppe Segno.  Raffele Di Paolo has been elected secretary general.  Federico Zoccarato has been confirmed as treasurer and Silvano Dalpasso in the conciliation board chair.
For the coming three-year electoral period, among the main objectives announced by the new president can be cited significant improvements in the recruitment and contracting procedures for spatial planners, better visibility in the media, financial robustness, also through conventions with institutions, and creation of more autonomous regional structures to get the members better involved in the association.  A slogan — "One planner for each municipality" — and a commitment: qualification as "European Spatial Planner" through full implementation in ASSURB's Statutes of ECTP's Guidelines of professional competencies in spatial planning.